Couples Counseling -- Not as Scary as You Think
Sometimes, couples may delay marital therapy because one or both of the partners has fears about what to expect from counseling. It is important to realize that the therapist is a neutral facilitator .
As a therapist, I won't take sides, my goal is to support the couple in accomplishing their goal. I often ask "Why are you hiring me?" That way, the couple, not an outsider , defines the outcome.
If you are hearing "you're not listening to me", or "you are so angry with me", and "You don't undersand me", or there is none or little intimacy in your relationship you may want to consider marital counseling to help you and your spouse sort out these emotionally charged comments or situations. It is my job to help you move out of the problems of your relationship and into solutions so that your life on a road of recovery.
It is very important to consistently put effort into your relationship with you spouse. Kids activities, parents' workplace stressors and multitude of other concerns can get in the way of couple's investing time in their relationships. It is easy to focus on the chaos of life and not focus on your relationship and how to make it work better. Most couples forget to do the things that worked well. Ask your self, what attracted me to my spouse in the beginning of our relationship, and refocus on that attribute. Once you start noticing only the negative in your spouse it is time to seriously consider marital counseling.
There are two things that help make marital counseling successful; being able to see one's behavior and be responsible for your part in the conflict and willing to make some changes. It takes both spouses to get to a difficult place and both spouses to move into a better place in their relationship.
Marital counseling is a tool to help support you and your spouse have the relationship be more of what you need and want in your life.
Vicki James is a licensed professional counselor and a licensed marriage and family therapist. Vicki's work with individuals and families includes relationship issues, improving communication, and life changes after complicated loss.